Recognizing the myth: the experience of memory in the art of Joseph Beuys
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The article is an attempt to view the work of Joseph Beuys from the perspective of the phenomenon of memory. Tracing the dimension of memory in the actions of the German artist, the author refers to the modern paradigm of memory, created by Sigmund Freud. Memory treated as dynamic structure, embedded in the psyche, encompassing the process of memorizing, forgetting, repression of memories, coding, decoding etc. Another trail in the article is the concept of memory after Mircea Eliade, seen as the power of returning to the origins, placing the human experience in a world beyond history, as knowledge par excellence. The paper focuses on the mutual relations between the biographic and collective memory, between memory, symbol and myth, examines the 'Lebenslauf/Werklauf' of Joseph Beuys through Eliade's concept of Image. The author interprets the actions and the texts of Beuys seen as an attempt of the evaluation of myth. It is in the process of anamnesis triggered by the myth and symbol in the biography, in recollection which is simultaneously the 'recognition of the myth' that the author seeks for another way in interpreting the works of Joseph Beuys.
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